Thought I would post about the arrival of my Ayre QB9-20 which is an upgrade from my QB9DSD which I sent to Ayre about 6 weeks ago - bear in mind that I am far from a professional reviewer. Ayre basically removes all of the electronics and turns the QB9 into a 5 series electronically and sonically. I wanted to wait to ‘hear’ how this upgrade would sound before pulling the trigger on something else and it has turned out to be quite stunning and much better than anything else I have. I have an older PSAudio unit and a Schiit Bifrost which I upgraded some years ago. There is an immediate clarity, smoothness and detailed instrument placement that is missing from my other Dac’s. Regardless of the track I select there is an audible/transformative difference which is very pleasurable. This is all being played into my recent 009S headphones purchase.
I have a copy of Vivaldi’s ‘Le Quattro Stagioni’ - Four Seasons - by the English Concert which is very well recorded. Instrument placement is the first thing I noticed - very exacting with me in the 3rd row. Wonderful spaciousness and depth that was lacking before.
I’ve toyed with getting a Denafrips Terminator II or plus but without actually listening to one vs. what I have I don’t know if I would be splitting hairs or experience an epiphany.
Needless to say I’m very pleased with this upgrade which was comparatively very inexpensive.
Edit: Ayre has supplied links to the review by The Computer Audiophile which was what finally prompted me to upgrade mine. Review | Ayre Acoustics QB-9 Twenty - Reviews - Audiophile Style